Culture (22)


When you think of Carnival, soca music naturally springs to mind. And when you think of Jamaica, dancehall inevitably pops up.

But what do you get when you mix the two? Well, you'll find out on the road next month with Xaymaca International as the Carnival titans have flipped the script to make it a perfect soca and dancehall fusion!

Having started the blend last year with the introduction of their Queen of Dancehall costume, Xaymaca upped the stakes today and took it one step further by signing dancehall artistes Ding Dong Ravers and Teejay as their official ambassadors for their 2020 Carnival season.

And we don't know about you but we're VERY excited.

Loop got a special invitation to the official signing this evening, and we caught up with Ding Dong and Teejay to find out what they think of their new ambassadorial roles.

Ding Dong beamed: "I respect Xaymaca to the fullest because they believe in me and they're the first to believe in me in the soca world. Big up Romeich because he convinced me from the first year to do Carnival. It was a very important move in my life and it worked out to be the best.

"I've a big soca song this year and I hope to create history with it on the road with Xaymaca."

Revealing some of what he'll be bringing to the road on April 19, Teejay added: "I will come party and enjoy myself." And he promised plenty of "wildness" and "madness".

Kandi King, Xaymaca co-director, explained a little bit of the reason for the dancehall partnership. She told Loop: "We really just wanted to give our international masqueraders a taste of Jamaica. Of course you can't think of Jamaica without thinking of reggae and dancehall, and if you think about dancehall, you have to think about Ding Dong. 

"So we just wanted to diversify and give them a small taste of what dancehall has to offer."

Andrew Bellamy, Xaymaca CEO, added: "We'll be bringing the perfect fusion of the Jamaican culture with soca. We have the best of the local dancehall scene, we have Ding Dong and Teejay and we'll be bringing some of the strongest 2020 soca artists and you combine that with the experience we provide from breakfast through to lunch and dinner.... It's going to be an unforgettable experience for our masqueraders."

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Jamaica and the Postcolonial Predicament
By Orlando Patterson

For a tiny island in the Caribbean, Jamaica has long enjoyed an outsize global reach — there are the songs of Bob Marley and the gold medals of Usain Bolt, as well as the millions of sun-seekers flocking to the island’s pristine beaches. It is quite an accomplishment for a nation “barely the size of Connecticut,” as Orlando Patterson notes in his fascinating study, “The Confounding Island: Jamaica and the Postcolonial Predicament.” But shadows hang over this sunny picture, not least distressingly high rates of poverty and homicide.

Patterson is a Jamaican who has long lived in the United States, working as a sociology professor at Harvard University, which allows him both an intimacy with the island and a degree of distance through which to analyze it. Although he provides extensive citations and robust discussions of theoretical frameworks, he also offers a personal story of affection and frustration, perhaps most evident in the questions that form all but one of the eight chapter titles. These include: “Why Has Jamaica Trailed Barbados on the Path to Sustained Growth?” and “Why is Democratic Jamaica So Violent?” Indeed, these two questions are so significant, he devotes the first half of the book to them.

"The Confounding Island: Jamaica and the Postcolonial Predicament" by Orlando Patterson.

Patterson starts by comparing Jamaica with its fellow former colony Barbados, which is 25 times smaller in area and, with under 300,000 inhabitants, possessing only one-tenth the population. Yet Barbados has more than twice the per capita G.D.P. of Jamaica and none of the political violence. To explain this, Patterson pursues lines of investigation that are not strictly economic. The themes of slavery and freedom run through his analysis; it is impossible to discuss contemporary Jamaica without their inclusion. Although Patterson’s time frame is postcolonial, to get to Jamaica’s economic present he navigates the pothole-strewn road of its troubled past.

Jamaica’s dramatic and complex history starts with the arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1494. In 1655 it fell under English control, and was subsequently transformed into a sugar powerhouse fueled by enslaved labor, until full abolition arrived in 1838. The island remained under British control until independence in 1962.

Such a trajectory is not uncommon in the Caribbean, but Patterson notes crucial distinctions in Jamaica’s development, particularly the British perception that it was dangerous and disease-laden compared with Barbados. As a result, there were fewer absentee plantation owners in Barbados and a more stable colonial population, which influenced the development of the island’s political institutions. The social history of these institutions is key to understanding how they functioned after independence, and why the implementation of what were often similar policies had divergent results.

Heywood Street market on West Queen Street in Kingston, Jamaica.Credit...Robert Rausch for The New York Times

From there, Patterson turns to violence, while also issuing some useful reminders about the nature of democracy. Jamaica, as he writes, is “genuinely democratic,” with a very robust civil society, and yet is rarely described as such. This is, in part, because of the notion that democracies, by their nature, are not violent, an idea “inconsistent with the realities of democratic history and practice.” Still, Jamaica remains an outlier in terms of scale, consistently topping global homicide lists.

Patterson examines how the political clientelism that took root in independent Jamaica has led to deadly “garrison-based politics,” in which a poor neighborhood is bribed or coerced through the threat of violence into voting for a particular political party. This phenomenon, mixed with persistent poverty, has given rise to the urban gangs and drug-related brutality that continue to blight the island. Patterson also revisits his own part in the development of Jamaica, returning to his time as an adviser to Prime Minister Michael Manley, who was the democratic socialist leader of the People’s National Party, and to the failure of the poverty-reduction program they tried to implement in the 1970s.

It is not all doom and gloom, however, especially when Patterson turns to Jamaica’s extraordinary cultural production. In examining the athletic prowess of the island’s runners, he swiftly dismantles any racist notion that Jamaicans are genetically more gifted as athletes, and instead returns to institutions. He lays Jamaica’s success in track and field at the swift feet of Michael Manley’s father, Norman, one of the nation’s founders, likening it to “the effect on track’s prestige in the United States had George Washington been a track star.” Manley was a talented athlete, and he promoted track and field as part of the formation of an independent national identity. Around this grew a nationwide infrastructure of running associations. Where institutions failed the economy, they proved to be champions in fostering athletics. In a similar vein, Patterson also looks at how the music industry has had enormous success beyond Bob Marley’s hits, in spite of the island’s limited resources.

Topics covered in other chapters range from women in the workplace to cricket, and such breadth makes this an eye-opening volume. It is also illuminating because Patterson carefully explores the complexity of the structural machinery behind Jamaica’s dazzling successes and dismal failures, rather than just chalking these up to simple causes. Although at times Patterson is critical of and disappointed by his fellow Jamaicans, his admiration for the nation’s independent spirit shines through.

Carrie Gibson is the author of “Empire’s Crossroads: A History of the Caribbean From Columbus to the Present Day” and, most recently, “El Norte: The Epic and Forgotten Story of Hispanic North America.”

Jamaica and the Postcolonial Predicament
By Orlando Patterson
409 pp. The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. $35.

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Using Dancehall to Teach Maths and Science



KINGSTON, Jamaica, Friday February 24, 2017 – The Jamaica National (JN) Foundation has collaborated with Mathematics and Science Professor at Columbia University, Christopher Emdin, to launch it’s a project that fuses dancehall music with science.

The ‘Science Genius Jamaica’ education project was officially launched this week. While Science Genius uses hip-hop music in the United States to reach students, Science Genius Jamaica will use dancehall music to bring the subject to life for students and teachers in an exciting dancehall clash competition that is geared at helping them explore and discover the wonders of science.

Senior Manager, Learning, Development and Culture at JN Group, Dr. Renée Rattray, said the initiative aims to inspire the confidence of students by using music and culture to get them more enthused about learning.

“As part of the broader science movement initiated by Chris (Professor Emdin) in New York schools a few years ago, our project aims to connect youth culture with education, so that learning the rigourous content of mathematics and science becomes more effortless for young people,” Dr. Rattray said.

She noted that statistics showed that students were not performing as well as they should in Mathematics and the core science subjects. She said the pass rate for Mathematics is 48 per cent; Chemistry, 57 per cent; and Physics, 63 per cent.

“The influence of dancehall on our young people is a no-brainer. It is our popular culture and its influences, today, extend beyond class boundaries and country borders. It is like the air our children breathe,” she said.

Minister of Science, Energy and Technology Dr. Andrew Wheatley welcomed the project, noting that it is intended to convert students into science lovers through the use of popular culture.

“I thank the JN Group and its Foundation for setting an excellent precedence in public-private sector partnership in assisting in the rescue mission of science and mathematics in Jamaica. So let me say thank you for your efforts in birthing the new generation of scientists, mathematicians, statisticians, engineers, botanists – both girls and boys,” Dr. Wheatley said.

He also thanked Professor Emdin for taking the time to come to Jamaica to introduce his model of fusing popular music with science and mathematics education.

“Importantly, and as the educators have stated, this new fusion approach brings the sciences and the arts together and, in the land of reggae and dancehall I believe it will reap positive results in the near future and improve the national Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) Science performance,” he noted.

State Minister for Education, Youth and Information Floyd Green also commended the JN Group for its initiative.

“We all recognize now that no one cap fits all and no one size fits all and you have to take different approaches if you are going to truly connect with your students,” he said.

Meanwhile, Professor Emdin noted that by merging dancehall to science “you are retraining the brain of youth who are embedded in dancehall, to reimagine themselves as scientists”.

“We are engaging in not just a cute programme; we are engaging in rewiring our generation,” he said.

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KINGSTON, Jamaica, Tuesday February 9, 2016 – Jamaica’s Ministry of Youth and Culture is moving to have reggae inscribed on the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) representative list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.

Principal Director of the Culture and Creative Industries Policy Division in the Ministry of Youth and Culture, Dr. Janice Lindsay, says the ministry has set up a committee to prepare the documents expected to be submitted in March 2017.

“We have so far had one meeting. It has been a robust meeting. Essentially, the discussions have been about how we describe reggae when we put forward that nomination file,” she disclosed on Sunday.

Dr. Lindsay said the global appeal of reggae was why it should be inscribed on UNESCO’s list.

“We need to protect that distinctive history of reggae as an intangible heritage and we need to do this before someone else presents the elements in some other form as theirs,” she stressed, adding that the move would have far more bearing on future generations.

“[The young ones], 50 years from now, would not have forgiven us if they lived to read in bits and pieces that there was a music emanating from our country and that it was lost over time, because there was no proof of the origin and distinctiveness being uniquely Jamaican.”

Dr. Lindsay argued that important stories of Jamaica’s music must be safeguarded “since it is the only sure way of protecting the integrity of the music.”


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Barbados exploring cultural agreement with Haiti



PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Friday August 28, 2015 – Barbados is exploring the possibility of creating a cultural agreement with Haiti.

That was disclosed by Minister of Culture, Stephen Lashley, following a meeting with Haitian counterpart, Dithny Joan Raton.

Lashley, who is currently attending CARIFESTA X11 in Port Au Prince, Haiti, said it was agreed there was a need for the two countries to seriously consider a cultural agreement.

“We have talked extensively about the need to work closer together. I have signalled the willingness of Barbados to discuss the possibility of a cultural agreement between Haiti and Barbados,” Lashley said, noting that due to the two countries’ shared history and African ancestry, such an agreement must be explored.

The minister also highlighted the value seen in Haiti’s history as one of the first black democracies; adding that both countries “have a lot to exchange and share.”

Lashley then indicated that further talks about such an agreement were likely to take place in the near future.

“We are looking to proceed towards concluding a cultural agreement in the shortest possible time,” he asserted.

biggie at carifesta


Lashley also indicated that CARIFESTA XII has proven to be an ideal opportunity for Barbadian culture to be presented to the region.


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Ladies and Gentlemen come out and JOIN ME I will be in the CELEBRITY COOK OFF

MILK RIVER; Clarendon, [date of release]: The Milk River Tourism Organization [MIRTO] has embarked on an initiative to enhance the Local, Regional and International Tourism potential of the historical community of Milk River in Clarendon.

Under the theme ‘Expanding Community Tourism’, the Milk River Tourism Organization (MRTO) will be showcasing the community as a viable Tourist Economic Zone, at its inaugural Milk River Sea Food & Jerk Festival that will be held on July 26, 2014.

Milk River Sea Food & Jerk Festival will have fabulous attractions that include, ‘Celebrity Chef Cook-Off Competition’, Beach Netball, Volley Ball and Football Competition, boat racing, boat rides, celebrity guests and performances by local artistes, and a kiddies’ village among others.

As the event suggests, there will be food galore, as the event will highlight the culinary skills of Farquhar’s resident chefs, and other participants from across Jamaica.

Patrons will get the chance to choose which of their top chef will receive a trophy for their efforts.

The event has been well received by residents and the business community in Clarendon, and also enjoys the endorsements of the Ministry of Local Government and Community Development, Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment and the Clarendon Parish Council.

Ms. Diane Sommerville, Treasurer of the Milk River Tourism Organization, says she is confident of a bumper crowd at the event as the responses from sponsors and persons stating their intent to attend, so far has been positive.

“Our social media interaction and word on the ground from community members,

Clarendon on whole and adjoining parishes have been tremendous. The organization expects a solid crowd, and anticipates that the event will be one of the most talked about events of the year”.

Ms. Sommerville, who is also the Manager of the Milk River Hotel and Spa, spoke to the efforts of the organization to push towards making Milk River become an attractive tourist destination, where local, regional and international tourists will feel a ‘pull’ to visit the community and participate in its everyday life and become one with residents.

“We are about to start a series of workshops to sensitize residents to the changes that will come when visitors arrive in the community. Training will include sensitizing residents on the benefit of the venture, and training towards getting them prepared to provide services such as food and accommodation to our visitors. Plans for training Tour Guides are far advanced and will commence in a few weeks.

Funds from the Milk River Seafood Festival will go towards training programs for this tourism thrust and the development of Early Childhood Education in Milk River and adjoining communities – another passion of the organization.

Contact: Stephanie Elliott

Compass Communication

1 (876) 449-4179 and 594-8664

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Tulloch Media Communications, Inc. (TMC) will host the Premiere of their new Reality Show Pilot - “Caribbean Wives of South Florida” on November 15, 2013 at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College in Manhattan, New York from 7:00pm to 10:00pm.

The Concept: The Caribbean Wives (CWSF) was produced to feature Caribbean wives living in South Florida and across the states, raising families, balancing marriage, career/business, living the American Dream with a cultural difference trying to fit in.

They’ve created innovative aesthetic expressions that have woven a complex tapestry of the diversity the Caribbean Diaspora represents and reflects.The one hour pilot is completed, its new, its fresh and its different. The high point in this pilot was the combustion of personalities based on culture as the women interacted and socialized in various settings.

For Caribbean people, its their education, where they live, what they drive, while at the same time adapting much of the American culture and lifestyle, bringing some level of satisfaction and perspective to what they consider achievement.

Thus proving to themselves and everyone that they belong here like anyone else; that they too can be included with the rich, famous, prominent, successful American women. Maxine J. Tulloch, the Executive Producer/Creator states, “As one of many ethnic groups in America, we are working to achieve respect, recognition, acknowledgement, credit and opportunities and we duly earn our positions in television entertainment.

When Hollywood wants to cast and portray a Caribbean character, they train an American actor to play the part and mimic the accent, instead of hiring an authentic Caribbean actor. Why?? The Caribbean people remain invisible - we want recognition, respect and acceptance.

Caribbean people are talented in all areas of the arts, science, education, business,sports, military and government and should be recognized for such. Yet Caribbean-American people remain invisible and under-represented in the television entertainment industry.”

The question was asked – “With the influx of so many reality series, what makes this one different?” Mrs.Tulloch responded that – “It’s different because there is nothing like it - Hollywood wants the high drama,the fight, the ridiculous conflicts, shock behavior - we bring none of that to the production.

Yes there are conflicts, but they are played out differently, the Caribbean way, with class and dignity, our culture dictates how we behave and it is shown in our production - we are different, America has never seen the Caribbean in its true form. In this production we expressed the culture as best as possible.

The kaleidoscope we reflect is forever changing. ”TMC is one of Florida’s most innovative and diverse media production company, focused on reaching Caribbean nationals residing in the USA, Canada, UK and the Caribbean Islands.

Acknowledging the diversity of USA’s demographic make up, TMC offers the most effective media channels to communicate with and engage the Caribbean-American Communities.

3666658322?profile=original3666657593?profile=originalTo reserve your tickets today call our office or visit and for more information see below

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Starting next week on MCTV on both to our Television screens nationally and our worldwide viewership via our website MCTV's new show JAMCITY a JAMCITY production starring Nena Simone - the woman of the innovative on screen anchor skills, JAMCITY is a new take on Jamaican Entertainment - Coz MCTV "bun a cliche" lol - the only way to access our fun and education and entertainment an dnews is to access us.


3666657495?profile=originalSo subscribe for free (ppl this free thing nah last fe ever) to our website


Like our fb page where exclusive updates are posted and "some" shows will be shown And MCTV is shown across the Jamaican nation on Television Screens.


Go to our website to see our partners in your parish. Love you, hugs and kisses Maia Chung CEO/Founder Maia Chung Television (MCTV)

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July 18 2012 -- New York, NY-- A Fe We Culture, Inc. today announced that it will be hosting the Ultimate Jamaica 50 Peoples’ Independence Bash (“UJ50PIB”) as part of the Carib Gold 2012 line up on August 4th 2012 at Eastwood Manor, 3371 Eastchester Road, Bronx, NY 10469.

The 2012 “Ultimate Jamaica 50 Peoples’ Independence Bash” is a unique event that will draw in audiences from the multicultural/multi-ethnic community as we celebrate Jamaica’s 50 years of Independence. The event will simultaneously raise the consciousness of youth development issues and is a platform for raising financial support for the “A Fe We Culture Global Program”.

The following prominent individuals and organizations that have shown an unwavering commitment to the betterment of Jamaica will also be honored at the event: Irie Jam, Street Hype, The Jamaica Progressive League, Hyacinth Bloomfield, Carol Parker, Minnel M. Porter, Bunny Roper, Barrington Wright, Dr. Paul Chen-Young, Living Truth, and Courtney Mellers aka “Coozy”.

Entertainment will be provided by DJ Oxtail Road International and Likkle Big Band alongside Artists: Mikey “MacDaddy” Jarrett, Living Truth, Levantay, Basil Wynter, Janice Hart, Gumbae Culture, Queen Tubby Sound, Ester Asebou and designer Hope Wade.

The event will be co-hosted by Dillard Boone of the A’vitar Foundation. Sponsors include: Nardas Ginger Punch, Interlude Pictures, Grace Foods International, GH Productions, E2G Solutions, Street Hype, A’vitar Face to Face, and Backyard TV.

Details of UJ50PIB are below:

Date: Aug. 4th, 2012 - 8:30pm -2:30am
Location: Eastwood Manor, 3371 Eastchester Road, Bronx, NY 10469 Cocktails and Hors d'oeuvres: 9pm-10pm
Dinner: Open Jamaican buffet 10:30pm – 12:30pm
Bar: Open Bar
Tickets: $95.00 in advance, $120.00 at the door (Proceeds are to benefit A Fe We Culture’s Youth Programs)

Dress: Jamaica chic

Ms. Antoinette Pitcan, Executive Director of A Fe We Culture, Inc. commented, “This is going to be a night to remember. We hope to have a solid turn out from the community as we celebrate with symbolic pride our legacy and contributions to the Diaspora. The awesome privilege to pay tribute to Jamaica Land We Love at 50 with great food, music, and a company of outstanding artists makes this an event not to be missed”.

For ticket information, please contact: (718)655-5369, (718)583-2897 or (914) 513– 9087.

Carib Gold is a celebration of “inspirituality” and community. This initiative is a yearlong line-up of events and productions that involves individuals, community officials, the media, artists, performers, celebrities, sponsors, and partners will come together in 2012 for this project.

The overall objectives of Carib Gold are:
• To provide a platform to encourage multi-cultural consciousness and awareness.
• To affirm the contribution of the Diaspora to the American tapestry.
• To create an event that attracts a significant amount of positive media attention for music, art and culture.

The goal is to build a substantial resource base for A Fe We Culture Inc. and the A’vitar Foundation’s Carib Gold project.

A Fe We Culture
A Fe We Culture Inc. is a not for profit 501 (c)(3)organization, incorporated in 1992 committed to the positing and integration of Caribbean /Diaspora arts and culture artistic excellence and eco-consciousness.

A Fe We Culture offers a new generation of leaders a close up look at people, the institutions, and the processes that shape public policy. The programs also provide participants the chance to expand their network of contacts in the cultural-related arts and industry.

Through the use of multiculturalism we endeavor to become an active medium for implementing, reflecting upon cultural history, language and discipline that support artistic expression. The collaborative nature of our organization creates a consistent focus on our community's ability to communicate and develop skills to achieve cultural integration and esteem.

Carib Gold
3992 White Plains Road, Bronx, NY 10466
Phone: 718-655-5369

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The 'Taboofication' of the Number Two

The number two has become quite an aberration in local popular culture. Indeed, a very weird phenomenon and one which is both amusing as it is perplexing.  For the life of me I cannot understand how this simplistic second child of the Greek numeral has come to be so scorned and vilified.

What is most amusing are the countless euphemisms that have succeeded the number two in popular discourse. It is commonplace to hear such phrases as ‘twice’, ‘second’, ‘one plus one’ or ‘that number between one and three’. Quite ludicrous!  

Fast food establishments’ bear the onslaught of this comeuppance, where not only are they contending with the fad and hype associated with local pop culture, they also have to consider potential language barriers that could impede their sales. They must tap into the psyche of this growing trend as when a young male in particular, approaches the cashier and orders a 'number twice' or a 'number second' from the menu display board, he or she must know to what he is referring.

The number two became taboo with the upsurge in the gaming culture. Numbers are assigned specific  meanings or rakes,  and the number two unfortunately, is the number that connotes sexual depravity and homosexuality. We already know how homosexuality for one is perceived in Jamaica. And so the number two has been alienated, exiled, vilified, and slowly and agonizingly, dying from its wounds of oral assassination.

Counting, commerce and language cannot be the same without the number two in its proper context. Imagine teaching your child to count or even do simple arithmetic. Foolhardiness maybe more acceptable in popular culture hence it’s cool to say one, second, three, but try holding a formal discuss in that manner.   

Jamaicans are bi-lingual - oops, bi also means two. Let's rephrase...

Perhaps Jamaicans are more multi-lingual than was original thought. There’s Patois, the Queens English, Jamaican English and on the flip side, the language of context which is spoken in the popular domain. Within this domain, nothing is at mere face value. Words and in this case numbers, have double meanings. The shocking part is that the language of context in Jamaican popular culture evolves constantly. Am surprised the number two has not been fully exiled already, but on second thoughts, it’s already taboo.



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The highly anticipated staging of Jamaica’s 49th Independence & Cultural Celebration (JICC) promises exhilarating entertainment, interactive activities, a variety of delicious Jamaican food, and enjoyment for the entire family.

The exciting event, is scheduled for Sunday, August 7 from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Miramar Regional Park, 16801 Miramar Parkway and will showcase and celebrate Jamaica’s history and rich cultural heritage. The event is being sponsored by telecommunications giant LIME who has pledged its full support for the festivities as presenting sponsor. The celebrations will feature the music, food, lifestyle, and history of Jamaica during a fun-filled family day in the park.

The event aims to connect the rich history and traditions of Jamaican culture to the greater South Florida community, all in recognition of Jamaica’s Independence Day. In addition to cultural games including ‘dandy shandy’ and traditional sounds of the ‘mento’ band, a premiere line-up of international performers are scheduled to take the stage.

Included in the entertainment package is the venerable Fab 5, Jamaica’s most popular live band who have been topping charts and receiving international recognition for the more than 40 years. Sharing the stage with Fab 5 will be international artistes Kashief Lindo, Ed Robinson, Amblique, Nikesha Lindo, and many more.

“For the last 140 years LIME has been part of Jamaica’s history and we have been one of the biggest supporters of Jamaican culture,” said chief marketing officer, Chris Dehring.

“We are proud to be part of an event which allows Jamaicans abroad to keep connected with their history and culture and enjoy a taste of home although they are overseas,” he added.

Jamaica’s 49th Independence & Cultural Celebration will be hosted by veteran radio personality Jamusa of WAVS 1170 Radio, and is produced by NRS, Inc. and Riddims Marketing in association with United Friends of Highgate. Sponsors include Western Union, VP Records, WAVS Radio, Vita Malt, Jamaica National Money Transfer, The Law Office of Kirk A. Barrow and Grace Foods. The event will be streamed live on the internet by Irie Times.

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3665136735?profile=originalPiton Calendar Girl. One lucky Saint Lucian beauty can win the opportunity of a lifetime by becoming the face of the popular Piton Calendar for 2012.

Interested ladies must be Saint Lucian nationals, eighteen years and over and should submit a full body profile photo and one head profile shot, along with their name, age and contact information to, or at the WLBL offices at Vide Bouteille or Vieux Fort. Deadline for submissions is August 31, 2011.
The winner will be announced via the local media later this year and all information submitted will remain confidential and private and will be for the sole purpose of Piton Calendar and WLBL.
Since 1992 Piton Beer has produced one of the most sought after and talked about calendars locally. From the models to the designs and printing the entire product is done locally to match the highest international standards, much like the award winning Piton Beer itself. The current 2011 Piton Calendar girl is Francilla Austin who won a similar search in 2010.According to Piton brand manager Germaine Serieux the search is open to Saint Lucian women from all over the island, who think they have what it takes to represent the brand. “You don’t necessarily need to have any experience we are simply looking for someone who is symbolic of the natural beauty of the island, its exciting culture and warm and friendly people,” Serieux says.

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Jamaica's 2011 Reggae Film Festival


With a tradition established over three years since inception by the Jamaica Film Academy, the Reggae Film Festival announces the staging of the 2011 event to be held in Montego Bay, Jamaica February 22-26, 2011. The REGGAE FILM FESTIVAL has continued to attract productions from all over the world that are part of a growing genre of films depicting aspects of Jamaican culture, music and history and the ways in which this music culture has impacted the world. The event includes premieres, seminars, competitions, new digital media work, live music performances and star-studded gala events.

In the decades since 1972 when Jamaica’s first feature film “THE HARDER THEY COME” exposed reggae to the world on its soundtrack, a growing number of films have continued to be made that showcased some of the films that have been made about Jamaica’s reggae music and culture. In 2008 these films were gathered together in one place for the first ever REGGAE FILM FESTIVAL -- a showcase of international films incorporating aspects of Jamaica's music, culture and film-making talent. Organized by the JAMAICA FILM ACADEMY with screenings in Jamaica's capital city Kingston over 5 days, the event was organized through a collaboration with Jamaican film maker and film festival organizer, BARBARA BLAKE HANNAH, working with British film archivist PETER GITTINS of REGGAE FILMS UK, and with support from private sector sponsors and the Ministry of Information, Culture, Youth & Sports.


The 2008 REGGAE FILM FESTIVAL inaugurated the JAMAICA FILM ACADEMY that inducted six film pioneers to guide and inspire the development and production of more Jamaican films and increase the nation’s creative expressions in film. Chair of the JFA is noted Jamaican actor CARL BRADSHAW, and members include SALLY HENZELL (widow of Perry Henzell), documentary film maker CYNTHIA WILMOT and Producer MARCIA FORBES. General membership is composed of film fans, friends and film makers.

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CaribShout's City Spotlight - New Orleans

New Orleans is one of the most unique cities in America. Its blend of French, Creole, and Southern culture brings you a feel of the Caribbean islands. The city is known for its famous architecture, diverse mouth-watering cuisine, and its musical and festival scene. Before you book your next flight, check out New Orleans.


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In search of entertainment hundreds gathered at the newly refurbished Anchorage in Chaguaramas on Sunday. The occasion was the Chinese Arrival Dragon Boat Festival 2010. The first race got underway around 10.30 am and with the final dose of team excitement scheduled to commence at 4.45 pm, the enjoyment began along Anchorage Bay, Chaguaramas. The Chinese culture, its authentic traditions, food and entertainment offered a great deal to patrons who entered free but paid for Chinese cuisine—a wealth of which was served up throughout the day. Hosted by the Chinese Bicentennial Committee, in conjunction with the T&T Dragon Boat Federation, the event marked the 204th anniversary of the Chinese arrival in T&T.
The area surrounding Anchorage was also alive, as patrons who’d chosen to remain on the outskirts also enjoyed the races from some 26 teams that participated. Among the teams in action were the Excellent Stores Titans, South East Sea Dragons, the MLIS Predators, Tidal Blitz and even secondary schools like Holy Name Convent, El Dorado West Secondary and St Francois Girls’ High School. Amid the boating action, entertainment provided by the Chinese Arts and Cultural Society proved a welcome addition throughout the day.
Among the entertainment lineup were displays of the Chinese Dragon dance and even one Chinese native who showed his eager audience that he could walk barefooted on broken shards of glass. Children who came along with their parents seemed to have enjoyed the constancy of the excitement as never was there a dull moment throughout.

Spectators throng The Achorarage pier in Chaguaramas on Sunday at Chinese Arrival Dragon Boat Festival 2010.

Traditional Chinese music blared from time to time, offering locals a taste of what living in China would be like, complete with doses of musical entertainment. Races throughout the day yielded a wonderful outcome for the Holy Name Convent A Team, which placed first in the Girls Final; The Trinity One Ton Warriors which was also first in the Boys Final; the Royal Francois A, winner in the Mixed Final; PFBC Shockwave, winner of the Corporate C Division; GHL Oarstruck- also winner of the B Division of the Corporate competitors; and finally, the Aquaholics and Excellent Stores Titans which tied for first place in the Corporate Division A segment of the races. Drizzles in the afternoon did not disappoint as everything went ahead as planned, leaving most, if not all with high hopes for the next year’s festival.

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The Tivoli Dance Troupe formed part of the kaleidoscope of performances at the Culturama 2010 Mello-Go-roun’
FT. LAUDERDALE - Culturama 2010 Mello-Go-Roun’ returned to South Florida as the audience was treated to a kaleidescope of cultural performances from Jamaica at the Coral Springs Center for the Performing Arts in Coral Springs, South Florida, last Sunday (Aug. 1). Part of the celebrations for Jamaica’s 48th anniversary of Independence, here in South Florida, Culturama 2010 returned after a three-year hiatus and was well received by a packed house at the 1200 seat theatre.

Patrons to the four-hour event were entertained by outstanding Jamaican talent, from Jamaica and here in South Florida, as they performed from a potpourri of traditional folk and contemporary dance, drama, oratory and musical recitals.

The large audience swayed and hand-clapped as they participated in what reminiscent of an old time festival fair singing to the rhythms of the mento bands and dancing to the music of quadrille, dinki minni, gerreh, kumina and brukins as entertainers graced the stage in a panorama of exotic and brightly coloured costumes.

This year, a new feature was added to the full and entertaining programme highlighting performances of Jamaicans of Indian and Chinese descent, living in the Diaspora. ‘JamIndians Lyme Lite Dancers’ performed song and dance showcasing the strong influence of the Indian culture as part of the Jamaican heritage.
Likewise, well-known Jamaican author and folklorist, Easton Lee, shared aspects of the strong Chinese influence in the Jamaican culture, as he read a series of poetry and dialect reflecting periods of Emancipation to present, similarly during which time also chronicled the history of Chinese migration to Jamaica more than 150 years ago.

Known as the oldest mento band in Jamaica, the Blue Glades Mento Band, performing for some 40 years, was most resilient in their performance combining the rhythmic blend of song and dance and stringing sounds from the banjo, the rhumba box, accordion player, flute and violin, as the audience sang a range of old Jamaican favorites like ‘Solas Market’ ‘Long Time Gal’ and ‘Sweet Jamaica.’

Other performances included the versatility of Jamaica Festival winning groups – the Clonmel Cultural Club from St. Mary as they electrified the audience with several pieces from their repertoire of traditional folk recitals, the Tivoli Dance Troupe demonstrating the agility of their bodies with creative dances, and several local artistes such as the Jamaica Folk Revue, Tallawah Mento Band, dub poet Malachi Smith, Kimiela Candy Issacs, and the reigning Miss Jamaica Florida, Shanice Cox.

Members of the Clonmel Cultural Group performing from their repertoire of traditional folk dances at the Culturama 2010 Mello-Go-roun’

Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, Hon. Olivia Grange, who participated in the festivities, said that the occasion had “taken us back in time, taking us from the deep roots to the contemporary of our Jamaican culture.”

Likening the festivities to that of Jamaica’s Independence festivities currently taking place, Minister Grange praised the versatility of the several performers, and the participation of the patrons as they celebrated a significant period in the nation’s history.
She also commended the organizers of Jamaica Awareness, Incorporated directed by Sydney Roberts and the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission “for keeping Jamaica’s rich cultural heritage alive and strong in the Diaspora.”

Among the many guests in attendance were Jamaica’s Consul General, Sandra Grant Griffiths Trinidad’s Consul General, Ms. Laura West, and civic leaders from the Florida State and City Commissions.

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Government coughs up money for bacchanal

This year there has been more meetings than actual events when it comes to “Looshan Carnival” 2010, leaving more than just a bitter tastes in the mouths of many over the event which supposedly has a tag line “nothing sweeter than that.” Money and the financing of the event have been at the centre of most of those meetings. Carnival over the years has been heavily subsidized by Government and whilst the various shows at Carnival have been major draws in terms of crowd, the event has suffered perennial financial losses, with little public accountability. This year it would appear that the Ministry of finance which is headed by Prime Minister Stephenson King is going all out to tighten the screws on the financial operations of the Cultural Development Foundation, the CDF, the institution which has the mandate for overseeing carnival events. After several meetings with between the Carnival stakeholders and CDF as well as between CDF and the Minister of Culture, there appeared to have been a stalemate last week about the financing for carnival, which over the past three years had received a boost of EC$1 million per year. Last Friday morning the Saint Lucia Calypso Association told the media that after last weekend they would have been pulling out of any competition events, with Calypso quarter finals due this week and Groovy and Power Soca qualifiers due last Saturday. But in a last ditch effort to save Carnival, hours later the Government’s press secretary announced that yet another EC$1 million would be made available to Carnival 2010. Ah but there is a catch the STAR has since learnt, or maybe more than just one. The money we have learnt will not be placed in the coffers for them to do as they please. Apparently the condition is such that all invoices and bills related to carnival must be submitted to the Ministry of Education and Culture for perusal and for subsequent payment. So what now of the Saint Lucia Calypso Association? Well after Friday’s announcement they were still holding on to their position pending receipt of an official communiqué from either CDF or the Government. On Sunday head of the CDF board Milton Branford met with the Calypso Association to discuss the way forward. The STAR has learnt that the meeting was quite cordial with just one issue unresolved. The Calypso Association had been negotiating EC$150,000 to split among the five tents. But whilst this money was guaranteed over the weekend, there is a little matter of a ten percent tax which would be placed on that figure and all other fees and prize money paid out to Calypsonians and Soca artistes for Carnival 2010. But whilst on Friday the SLCA 2009 had this to say; “we are completely dissatisfied with the disregard and apparent lack of respect from the Ministry of Culture after the assurance that we would receive firm word on our subvention by Wednesday June 16, 2010,” on Monday they were singing a different tune. Having since been written to be the Ministry of Education and Culture the Calypso tents will as of this evening be hosting their quarter finals with Spectrum setting things off tonight, followed by TOT on Thursday night, South tent on Friday and Ambassadors on Saturday. The issue of the ten percent tax the SLCA has been advised to approach Inland Revenue for a waiver. The STAR has also been informed that of the EC$1 million just half of that will go directly to CDF to cover their expenses and prize money whilst the balance will go towards community carnival, Calypso and Steel-pan. The government is also demanding that CDF presents a detailed document about its operations and expenses for Carnival this year as well as its proposals for making the event more financially viable in the future. This was one of the intentions in the first place when carnival was shifted from its traditional pre-lentern period to July.

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Japanese school girls on day trip to local market: GBurkeImages Photo

Today's world is smaller than ever – far more connected than anyone could have imagined it would be when we were kids. That is why one of the best things you can do to prepare your kids for the future is to raise them as citizens of the world.
You don't have to travel the globe to give your children a broad perspective of other cultures and world affairs. There are so many things that you can do right at home to encourage their curiosity about, and understanding of, the world.

The first step is to be curious about the world yourself; your kids will pick up on it. Here are some other ways that you can start to bring various cultures into the lives of your children.

* Invite the world into your home by hosting an exchange student.

There are few things that can broaden a child's world view like getting to know someone from another country. Hosting a high school international exchange student goes beyond a brief meeting and forges a lifelong bond between your children and students from abroad. The opportunities for interaction are almost endless, and it's a chance to not only bring the world into your home, but to share the best of America with someone from another country.

Laurie Scott of Nevada has hosted a number of exchange students. "What these kids share with us is enormous," she says. "We have learned as much from them as they have learned from us ... this is more than just a 'neat' program; it really does positively impact global attitudes and increases understanding among families, schools and communities." Families that want to host a student can contact EF Foundation for Foreign Study, which brings more students to the United States than any other exchange program, at

* Explore other cultures right in your own backyard.

In America's melting pot, there are almost endless options for getting a taste of other cultures. Take a trip to a museum where you can find out about other countries and cultures. Art museums are often a great way to learn about cultures from around the globe, through artworks and crafts that have specific uses and meanings.

* Sample cuisine from other countries.

Take the family out for a meal at a restaurant that serves food from different countries or consider preparing world cuisine recipes together at home. Visit ethnic food blogs written by cooks around the globe, or search recipe databases, to find something that you can make in your own kitchen. Whether it's Indian, Mexican, Japanese or German, you can learn a lot about a country from its food.

* Learn another language as a family.

There are a lot of cultural subtleties hidden in foreign languages, and learning to speak one (or more) is a great way to connect with people from around the world. Consider learning a language as a family through a community education course or a local cultural organization – you can even download language instruction podcasts or mp3s from iTunes and other places on the Web.

* Make the most of media.

There are endless opportunities to learn about the world, right at your fingertips. Using the media to gain perspective about the world can take many forms -- from reading a blog written by someone living in another country to signing up at an e-mail pen pal exchange site.

Look for movies that are set in other countries and can provide insight about what has happened or is currently happening there. Search your TV listings for travel programs or history shows that are valuable learning tools, then watch and discuss them as a family. And of course, the simple, transporting experience of reading books about far-off places will always be a great way to learn more about the world.

Learning about the cultures and people of the world really does begin at home. Whether you talk to your kids about current world events or pique their interest through photos of places you've traveled to, by helping them develop a broad worldview, you're giving them a world of possibilities. Courtesy of ARAcontent

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Students from Winston Park Elementary and Parkway Middle School participated in the Arts Inspire... workshop. FORT LAUDERDALE – The Broward Center for the Performing Arts, designated as the county’s first international cultural embassy by the Broward County Board of County Commissioners, has given students a passport to other cultures through its interactive “Arts Inspires…” annual workshop, which has featured artists such as Romero Britto and Pablo Cano. Recently during “Arts Inspire… Jamaican Rhythms," percussionist Willie Stewart led a drumming workshop for 60 fledgling musicians from Winston Park Elementary and Parkway Middle School. Stewart, who has performed around the world and with legendary performers such as Stevie Wonder, Carlos Santana, Bob Marley, Quincy Jones, Sting and Michael Jackson, educated students on the influence and impact that Africa has had on Jamaica’s people, rhythm/music and culture. The workshop was presented by the Broward Center for the Performing Arts and the School Board of Broward County with participation by the Jamaican Consulate. “With a significant Jamaican community in South Florida, we are pleased to partner once again with the Broward Center to educate, celebrate and promote Jamaican culture to local students,” said Consul General Sandra Grant Griffiths of the Jamaican Consulate. The Abdo New River Room of the Broward Center was the backdrop for the workshop, where students were first introduced to percussion instruments from around the world. They then focused on musical concepts such as rhythm, timing and beat; tonality and harmony; performance techniques; and the role of percussive music forms in ritual and culture. The workshop culminated with a performance by Stewart and the students, who demonstrated the rhythms they learned during the workshop to an audience that included School Board of Broward County members Maureen S. Dinnen, Phyllis C. Hope, and Benjamin J. Williams; The Honorable Sandra Grant Griffiths of the Jamaican Consulate; and representatives from the participating schools. “The School Board of Broward County is committed to educating the total child,” said Maureen Dinnen, of the School Board of Broward County. “The arts are a critical component of our educational programming, kindergarten through 12th grade. In the workshop, we saw students energized, excited and inspired to meet and learn from Willie Stewart. We are proud to participate in such a rewarding program that offers our students enriching and memorable educational experiences.”

L-R: Maureen S. Dinnen, School Board of Broward County; Willie Stewart; Sharon Brooks, Broward Center Director of Education. More than two million students have attended educational programs at the Broward Center through the nationally award-winning Student Enrichment in the Arts partnership program with the Broward Center and Broward County Public Schools. The two organizations also collaborate on initiatives which encourage literacy skills among pre-school and elementary school children. “Collaboration has always been central to the Broward Center’s mission. Our partnership with Broward County Public Schools allowed us to create the “Arts Inspires…” program, which connects talented artists in our community with our students and helps them learn about the rich mosaic of cultures we enjoy in South Florida,” said Broward Center President and CEO Kelley Shanley. “I am delighted that the event focused on the tapestry of cultures that have influenced Jamaican music – and highlighted the richness of Jamaican culture. Our partnership with the Jamaican community, which started with the Jamaican Consulate in Miami and continues to grow, has allowed us to bring many exciting Jamaican events to the Broward Center.”

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Having given the world some of its most exciting musical art forms, the Caribbean has staked its claim as a major international cultural center. The steel band, calypso, reggae and soca made their entry into the world of entertainment and culture in the 20th century dominating niche segments of the global market and in the case of reggae and calypso they have crossed over into the global musical mainstream in a fashion that has taken the industry by storm. These aspects of Caribbean culture plus interpretive and limbo dancing are to be the center-pieces of a wide-ranging discussion at a special session of the 14th Caribbean Multi=-National Business Conference in Montego Bay. And two key international and Caribbean cultural icons, Harry Belafonte, a major stage, television and motion picture actor and singer for at least half of a century, and Prof. Rex Nettleford, Vice Chancellor Emeritus of the University of the West Indies and founder of the Jamaica National Dance Theater Company are to be among panelists discussing the “Business of Art, Culture and Entertainment.” “The Caribbean has certainly contributed significantly to the world’s cultural landscape in general and music and dance in particular. The session of the conference that’s being devoted to this aspect of Caribbean life and experience is very important,” said Prof. Nettleford. “Coming at a time when the Caribbean, indeed the world is going through its worst financial and economic crisis in the past 50 years and the countries in our region are bearing the brunt of the fall-out from the global meltdown, cultural and artistic expression as a business takes on added significance.” Belafonte, a regular participant in the annual conference having attended some of them in Jamaica, the Bahamas and St. Maarten is expected to lead off the discussion, bringing both a Caribbean and international perspective to the session. “We are very fortunate to have both Belafonte, whose recordings of the 1950s, including such immortal hits as ‘Day-O,’ ‘Jamaica Farewell’ and Island in the Sun became the first million sellers in recording history, and Prof. Nettleford, a prominent academic and cultural force in the Caribbean available to participate in the examination of culture and help point us and the region forward into the second decade of the 21st century,” said Karl Rodney, publisher of Carib News. In addition, Howard Dobson, Chief of the SchomburgCenter for Research on Black Culture, and Jamaica’s Minister of Culture, Olivia Grange, are also expected to participate in the session, Rodney explained. The conference at the Ritz Carlton resort is expected to attract more than 250 business executives of large and medium-size U.S. and Caribbean firms, entrepreneurs, government representatives and others. Investment, tourism, manufacturing, health, telecommunications, agriculture, import-export trade, opportunities for two-way trade and travel and hospitality are among the issues on the agenda and table for consideration. “Essentially, this is a business and investment conference and culture as an economic sector would fit neatly into the program,” said Rodney. “We expect it to be a highly successful, informative and entertaining session.” By: Tony Best

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